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Date: October 17th 1918

17 Oct. 1918

Here we are again. Pen gone dry, spending the time writing. The Old Turkey and I slept peacefully together and quite comfortably. The floor below impressed me with its hardness and no amount of imagination or philosophy could soften it. I was pretty much possessed too with modern demons upon whom I would the vengeance of an early death today and suggested to them that indeed such was the case there was no earthly use in dining though some have claimed it is best to die full and well favoured.


At six I was up, washed my hands and dried them on my face for I had thrown my towel away on the precious day. Breakfast after waiting half an hour in the cold standing in line. It consisted of fried meatballs; mine was not cooked unfortunately, bread and tea.


At eight we were lined up and again weeded out. We for Etaples or ‘heat apples’ as the English Sgt./Major said go at twelve today. Hurrah for my French home. Glad to get back to the typewriter on night duty.


A couple of stories which Miss Bishop had in her paper are worth recording. Good people in England donate eggs to the soldiers in the hospitals. They are brought over by the Red Cross. On these eggs are written names inviting correspondence and texts. The latter she declared was not always a wise method of religious propaganda. On one was written ‘God is love’ and imagine the feelings of the man to find the egg rotten.


This is the other. English people resident near the hospital visit the patients bringing them fruit and dainties. One English lady came very frequently and most of the men were very glad to see her but one would do nothing but swear at her. On the particular day she had strawberries and when he opened his mouth to swear she popped in a strawberry and this continues until the man had a very good feed. These were stories taken from her diary.


Now Nellie, have I not written a full account of all my leave. You could never have patience to read more than this. Tell me truly don’t you wish you were a soldier to go on leave to Blighty?